Accessibility links

Armed Groups in Gaza


Main Palestinian Armed Forces in Gaza

HAMAS ("Islamic Resistance Movement")
  • Formed by members of the Muslim Brotherhood in 1987 at the beginning of the first Palestinian Intifada (uprising)
  • Its charter calls for replacing Israel with an Islamist Palestinian state
  • Won Palestinian legislative elections in 2006, ending the secular Fatah movement's dominance of parliament.
  • Controls 10,000-20,000 fighters, around half belonging to its military wing and others providing internal security
Palestinian Islamic Jihad
  • Established in 1980 by Muslim Brotherhood members
  • Dedicated to replacing Israel with an Islamist Palestinian state.
  • Controls about 1,000 fighters, making it the second strongest militant faction in Gaza.
  • Fired rockets at Israel sporadically in recent years.
Salafist Groups
  • Loose network emerged in Gaza since Hamas's 2007 takeover
  • Range from dozens to hundreds of members linked mostly by clan and neighborhood
  • Share al-Qaida's belief in global jihad and establishing a pan-Islamic caliphate
  • Engaged in sporadic rocket fire on Israel, sometimes in defiance of Hamas orders to stop
Secular Nationalist Groups Linked to Fatah
  • Militants allied to the secular Fatah movement
  • Includes small factions such as the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades
XS
SM
MD
LG